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Stories by David Bressan

Evolution

Cowboys, Dinosaurs & Evolution - A tribute to Ray Harryhausen

" The Valley of Gwangi "* (1969) is considered one of the most notable prehistoric-monster-movies of all times - this fame is based on the unusual story (adapted from a script by special effects pioneer Willis "King-Kong" O'Brien ) but more so on the stunning creature effects featured in the movie and produced by special effects legend Ray Harryhausen - who passed away today aged 92.The movie combines the western-genre with the classic monster-movie of the sixties and seventies - however the movie was released at the end of the golden age of monster-movies and the public had almost lost interest in this genre...

May 7, 2013 — David Bressan
The Sciences

Citizen Science: Are you brave enough to venture to Earth s Core?

Since old times people - especially geologists - speculated about the interior of Earth. The Italian poet Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) imagined an allegoric center of the Earth: a frozen wasteland, not reached by the divine light, where Lucifer is entrapped in eternal ice.The French Sci-Fi author Jules Gabriel Verne (1828 - 1905) based " A Journey to the Center of the Earth " (1864) already on early science...

April 1, 2013 — David Bressan
The Sciences

March 30, 1759: The Four Layers of Earth

In a letter dated to March 30, 1759 the Italian mining engineer Giovanni Arduino (1714-1795) proposed to the physician and fossil collector Prof. Antonio Vallisnieri the subdivision of earth's crust in various classes of rocks.Based on his observations along the foothills of the Alps, Arduino recognized a stratigraphic column with 4 classes: unstratified or poorly stratified rocks (or " Primary Rocks ", survived into the 20th century as " Paleozoic "), stratified rocks (" Secondary Rocks ", or " Mesozoic "), more recent, as yet unconsolidated, sediments (" Tertiary Rocks ") and as own category volcanic rocks...

March 30, 2013 — David Bressan
The Sciences

Maria Matilda Ogilvie Gordon: Pioneer Geologist of the Dolomites

Dana Hunter is compiling a list of Pioneering Women in the Geosciences, so here a name closely linked with the geology of the Dolomites .The Scottish Maria Matilda Ogilvie Gordon (1864-1939, the photo shows her in 1900, image in public domain), or simply May , was the oldest daughter of a clergy family with eight children, five boys and three girls.The parents valued education and maintained connections to various schools and colleges - Maria entered Merchant Company Schools' Ladies College in Edinburgh at age of 9...

March 20, 2013 — David Bressan
Evolution

Darwin's Tree and Deep Time

" Geologising in a Volcanic country is most delightful,… []"Geologist Charles Darwin in a letter to his fatherDarwin is today remembered for his gradualistic view of earth's history, an essential prerequisite for his view of life, as he concludes in 1859 " from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved ." The famous voyage of the Beagle would prove decisive for Darwin to discover deep time and adopt this view.The first stop of the H.M.S...

February 24, 2013 — David Bressan
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